The introduction of 4G into the UK was something of a slow process, as EE secured access to the technology almost a year ahead of its rivals, which has made it the leading provider of the services across the country something that led BT to buy the firm for 12.5bn in February.
Vodafone’s 4G, meanwhile, is now available in 500 locations across the country and plans to offer 98 per cent coverage nationwide by the end of 2015 as part of a 1bn investment, and as of February 2.2m customers had signed up to the 4G network.
The firm is now targeting businesses in order to extend the reach of 3G’s successor, having found that 64 per cent of businesses in the country haven’t adopted 4G. Cost was cited as the biggest reason preventing usage, followed by a lack of understanding as 43 per cent of business leaders said they have a poor knowledge of the tech’s capabilities.
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Phil Mottram, UK enterprise director, Vodafone UK, said: Despite the growing availability and affordability of 4G devices and services, the lack of a true understanding of the benefits that the technology can bring, as revealed by this survey, is undeniably holding enterprises back from reaping the rewards of introducing 4G to their business.
This barrier is also preventing businesses from gaining an advantage over their competitors here and abroad in the increasingly competitive global marketplace. Now is the time for those businesses which are yet to invest in 4G to do so and to start benefiting from its full potential.
Among companies that have adopted 4G, however, 51 per cent revealed increased data transfer speeds as the top benefit. Elsewhere, 48 per cent said they could make better use of business app when working remotely and 43 per cent said they had faster responsiveness to customers and suppliers.
SMEs are said to be the ones at the most risk from falling behind, as just 24 per cent have 4G compared to 39 per cent of large businesses.
The research from Vodafone comes on the back of it being named and shamed by Ofcom as the mobile network with the most complaints in Q4 2014, while Tesco Mobile was named the company with the fewest.